Producers and sellers of meat often prefer polymer film when packaging products. It is lightweight, easy to transport and open, unlike trays and cans. At the same time, there are no rules about how big the piece can be: you can pack large cuts with and without bones.
The following varieties are popular:
- multilayer – obtained by blown extrusion, they come with two, three and barrier layers;
- modified, the production includes additives that improve strength and other characteristics.
These types are characterized by strength characteristics simultaneously responsible for two functions: they create a barrier that prevents air penetration and protects against mechanical damage.
Some suppliers pack products in stretch film, which is widely used in trade. It is easy and economical to manufacture, provides an attractive appearance, and has low shrinkage. This means it does not repeat the product’s shape when the temperature changes.
During the transportation of such bags or careless storage, ruptures or cuts are possible, resulting in the product becoming unusable due to contact with air. Therefore, when choosing a protective packaging film for packing meat with a bone, one should rely on heat shrinkage: the higher it is, the better.
It is a misconception that the main thing is the physical density of the polymer material. Of course, it is responsible for strength, but modern production additives and stabilizers eliminate this disadvantage in low-density raw materials.
The rules for packing beef are regulated by the state standard 31797-2012, which applies to cuts with and without bones. The document does not limit the material and type of containers. It establishes only general requirements related to the observance of sanitary and hygienic standards.
Basic rules: no smell, cleanliness and dryness. Mandatory additional processing with disinfectants during reuse and compliance with the name and thermal state during sorting.
The overall shelf life of fresh and chilled beef is lower than that of pork, but the opposite is true when frozen.
Chilled packaging will be the best protective packaging for storing or packing any type of meat.
The meat is packed mainly in a vacuum, less saturated with protein myoglobin or in a gaseous environment. Therefore, unlike beef, it can be stored longer.
Manufacturers often choose to shrink, thermoform, or combine bags. They are the most practical and suitable for modern production lines. State requirements for containers are established in GOST 31778-2012. They are similar to the 31797-2012 beef standard in content.
Chilled pork with victimization is stored for up to 20 days. In special cases, when high barrier properties are provided – up to 12 weeks.
Polymer film or bags with round corners, made from LDPE, are mainly used for chicken meat. This shape provides an attractive appearance, ease of transportation, and protection from bone damage.
Packing rules are regulated by the state standard 31962, which recommends the following types of polymer containers:
- sealed bags;
- plain or shrink film, with or without backing.
The material protects the product from mechanical damage, allows colorful printing and creates a barrier against air ingress.
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